Husband and Wife Film Company Pave The Way for Women, Minorities in Hollywood
Actor and filmmaker, Alex West, started Life After Life Films with his wife Ruby Lee Dove II. They started the film company in 2014 to make a wave for women and minorities in the film industry.
The duo writes, directs, produces and finances their own projects making them in control of their content 100 percent.
I recently interviewed Alex where he chatted more on the inspiration behind the lens. Check out the interview below.
Growing up, who were and still are your inspirations?
For me it was people like Will Smith, Tupac and Michael Jordan just because of their appeal, but as I got older it became my mother and father. Two of the most loving, caring and hardworking people that I know. They always held down multiple jobs to make it happen. My father rose to entrepreneurship and has been running his own business for 15 years now. I’m inspired by that and people that grind and make something out of nothing.
What influenced you to become an actor and filmmaker?
I used to watch a lot of Martin and Fresh Prince of Bel-Air as a kid, so impersonating Will and Martin with their antics came natural to me. also used to watch movies like Juice, Menace to Society and Boyz in the Hood on VHS, so I used to remember the words and act them out at the movie played. Soon, family and friends took notice and I liked their reactions.
When being a basketball player wasn’t working out, I re-discovered acting and the joy of entertaining people. As opportunities kept coming to manifestation, I kept rolling with it and just applied the same principles learned in basketball.
I got inspired to be a filmmaker after being an actor long enough to see that there are not enough opportunities for women and minorities in film. Now I strive to provide opportunity to those like myself that want a chance to showcase their talents and not just be limited to portray drug dealers, pimps, prostitutes and slaves in every film.
You received an award for your film, what award did you win and for what movie?
I won five awards for a film in which I wrote, directed, produced and starred as the lead actor. It is titled, Blood and Water. One award was a platinum Best Film award, two were Golden Best Film Awards and two were international Honorable Mention awards.
How did receiving these awards make you feel in change your career?
It’s awesome man. Receiving awards and acclaim for something you put your blood, sweat and tears into is incredible. I grew up less fortunate so hard work and perseverance is all that I know. It makes me proud and grateful for my cast and crew members that helped and supported, especially my wife who was there to support the film when it was only an idea floating around in my head.
It definitely makes me more confident as a filmmaker, as I never doubted myself at all during the process, and it changes the way people perceive me. I now get people that contact me via email or social media asking me to mentor them, read their script or help them create. I just do what the universe wants me to do, which is help them and reciprocate as much as I can.
What are the prior projects that you made and starred in?
As an actor, I have been in 40+ projects including TV series, feature films and national commercials. I was in a TV series titled, From Dusk Til Dawn. Another TV series titled, Trap Plane and a feature film titled, The Perfect Wife.
As a filmmaker, I helped direct and produce several films before learning in deciding to create my own which was Blood & Water. One of the films was titled The Foreign Exchange Student. It went to several movie theaters and it is now available for purchase online. The others were smaller projects that are only available in the film festival world.
What are some of the upcoming projects that we can look forward to seeing from you?
Through my film production company which is Life After Life Films, you can expect to see a comedy web series titled Suds that is Written, Directed and produced by my wife Ruby Lee Dove II. We are also preparing to film a drama movie titled High Q that I wrote, directed and produced. Both will be released in the summer on 2018. I am starring in another web series titled Rollups that will also be released summer 2018 and a feature film titled Decapitorium that should be released in late 2018.
Can you offer words of advice to our fellow millennials?
I honestly think that we are the entrepreneurial generation that can break molds and change the game. I would say figure out what you are great at, hone in on it and start a business in that field. Persevere and believe in your craft because no one else will if you don’t. Grind on it every day and the universe will open it up for you. Ashe.
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